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McDonald’s Philippines: An inclusive, safe space for diverse workers 

By Jerald Uy Published Jul 05, 2024 5:00 pm

As July signals the start of graduation season, so does job hunting for new members of the workforce. Apart from compensation and benefits, a jobseeker should also probe if the company he or she wants to work for provides an inclusive and safe environment.

The reality is - the world outside our window, amplified by the vitriol in the comment section on social media, might still not be accepting of people who are different from them. The SOGIE (sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression) Equality Bill still languishes in Congress. Local ordinances, along with other grounds, protecting people against discrimination based on SOGIE only exist in five provinces, 15 cities, one municipality, and three barangays, according to the United Nations Development Programme. 

In the Philippines, the 2018 Corporate SOGIE Diversity and Inclusiveness Index, a survey conducted among 100 companies, revealed that only 17 percent of them have implemented any form of SOGIESC (sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, and sex characteristics)-inclusive anti-discrimination policies. 

‘Love Ko All’

For one, global fastfood giant McDonald’s Philippines is making a stand against discrimination at work by making employment decisions without consideration of factors such as age, race, color, religion, gender, disability status, sexual orientation, gender identity, or expression. 

In 2019, McDonald’s Philippines opened job roles for senior citizens and people with disability but this was halted during the pandemic. As restrictions eased out, it resumed the hiring program in 2023. 

“In addition to offering consistent employment opportunities to our regular full-time workers and working students, we remain steadfast in our commitment to have a diverse and inclusive workplace. We proudly extend these opportunities to out-of-school youth, senior citizens, and persons with disabilities (PWDs) through our community hiring programs,” said McDonald’s Philippines Vice-President - Human Capital Group Ruben Marasigan.

While it does not keep track of its workers’ gender identities to protect their privacy, the company currently employs 30 senior citizens and around 8,500 out-of-school youth, which is close to a quarter of its crew employees. 

No figure is yet available for PWD workers as McDonald’s is set to hire them soon through its partnerships with local government units. The company particularly wants to extend opportunities to deaf and mute workers. All will go through the hiring process, which consists of an interview and a simulation.

A chance for a better life

After hiring, all McDonald’s Philippines employees are required to attend regular training programs such as the “Safe, Respectable, and Inclusive Training” and “Workplace Violence Prevention Policy” to ensure a safe space for everyone. These are regularly updated to meet relevant needs.

McDonald’s also has various development programs that maximize the growth of crew and managers. The management trainees and the part-time crew (based on worked hours equivalent to six months) can be regularized after six months. Once promoted as a manager trainee, potential employees can be promoted to the Restaurant General Manager role. 

Apart from the attractive career track, regular employees will receive statutory benefits, world-class training with structured curriculum and modules—which is the same training program provided to store employees globally, free meals, rice allowance and food discount, insurance or hospitalization benefits, and performance and wage review.

“Not only are we opening our doors but also empowering individuals from diverse backgrounds to access world-class training and skill development, affirming our belief in their potential and their right to a chance for a better life,” Marasigan added.

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Editor’s Note: BrandedUp is designed to provide you with insightful, inspiring and educational content created by PhilSTAR L!fe in collaboration with brands like McDonald's Philippines.